D3.2 Country Report | July 2021

Authors: Rasha Al-Maqableh, Anas Al-Sobeh and Aya Akkawi, Glasgow Caledonian University

Due to its geographical, political, religious, and socio-economic stand, Jordan has confronted radicalization since the 1970s to the present. What have been steering those radicalized movements are internal and external factors starting with state-led actions, Muslim Brotherhood, Salafi-Jihadism, lone wolves, and refugee radicalization as internal factors and ending with Al-Qaeda in Iraq and ISIS in Syria as external motivators. While the country’s policing/ intelligence system is highly alert to prevent violent attacks inside the country, the external factors can be seen as the most threatening of all radicalized agents as they managed to conduct unforgettable violent attacks in the history of Jordan. D.RAD work page entitled “Trends of Radicalization” attempts to explore two major events, referred to as Hotspots of Radicalization: Amman Bombings which was planned by Al-Qaeda in Iraq in 2005 and the capture and burning of Jordanian Flight Lieutenant Muath Al-Kasasbeh by ISIS in 2015. These major events symbolize the trends of radicalization in Jordan and provide a good understanding of the threat of radicalization Jordan may have faced or still face.

This report chooses these two violent attacks as hotspots to shed light on the first violent operation for each radicalized agent, Al-Qaeda in Iraq and ISIS, respectively. Contextualizing and analysing those events would help identify the trends of radicalization in order to pin point the political and cultural conditions that structure those major events among others in the country. Relying on research papers and national and international media coverage, the chosen incidents, qualified as hotspots, are viewed and analysed from the micro, meso and macro levels. The report also identifies the political and socio-cultural circumstances as the facilitating factors for the violent attacks. In addition, the perpetrators’ motivational factors of the hotspots are examined in perceptions of injustice, which lead to grievance, alienation and polarization (I-GAP), a tool which contains a questionnaire about these four components.